Looking for a bike set up to suit IMWA conditions in a few weeks? Our pro athletes have been good enough to give some special tips on what they use for bike set up during a race. We asked if they used power or speed on their display? We also wanted to know what tyres they used and what pressure? Finally we wanted a peek inside their race tool kit. Some very surprising answers and many differences between them all. Hopefully this will help to give a guide to what you should try come race day!
Martin Jensen (winner IM Japan 2013)
For racing I only focus on power. During 70.3’s I don’t wear a hear rate monitor, but I like to in an Ironman. During the run I use both pace and RPE as a guideline, since heart rate can be quite skewed depending on conditions (heat and humidity)
I ride Shimano C75 wheels and they only come as tubular. I would prefer clincher if that was an option, but riding shimano wheels it isn’t. Pressure depends on many things. Condition of road surface? Size of tire (23mm or 25mm)?. Usually I have between 7.5 and 8.5 bar pressure. In my tool kit I have not a lot. Nothing in a 70.3 race. Spare tubular and Co2 inflator on full distance ironman.
Todd Israel (4th IMWA 2013)
I only have power on my screen. Speed isn't important if you’re working off watts. I currently race on tubular wheels. I run anywhere from 110 to 140 depending on the road surface. Higher pressure on hotmix road surfaces. On the bike I have a spare tubular, two gas and "pit stop"
Matt Burton (Winner Challenge Phillippines)
Yes I have power and yes I have speed. Speed is a variable I pay very little attention to though power is able to be controlled across all externals. Watts give purpose to each session and ride even those easy days. Power is essential to gather greatest information on your level of output aerobically and anaerobically to assist in controlling effort of the iron-distance. After 5 years racing on tubulars have followed the new trends as clinchers prove just as fast nowadays. I run 120psi in standard temps and wet conditions. 110 in heat of Asia on tropics. In the tool kit you will find a Tube and co2 and tyre levers.
Liz Blatchford (dual winner IM Cairns 13/14)
Power is all I display but I don’t actually ride to power; I just have it there for later reference. Tubulars 100-110. Closer to 100 if it’s going to be super-hot or wet. You will find Pit stop and Co2. Maybe a full spare tub if it’s a validating IM, as in I have to finish to get a Kona spot. I guess I ride with the hope that spare wheels aren’t too far away (as a pro). I also fill my tyres with sealant before I race to give an extra layer of protection.
Matty White (2nd IM Cairns 2011)
Yes I have just been hooked up with a stages power meter, which also displays speed so I display both. Tubulars always with 140 PSI and I don’t carry a tool kit.
Lisa Marangon (2nd IM Australia 2014)
Nothing (power or speed), I go by feel...in training I do numbers with watts. Tubular and clincher are both just as good. Depends on the individual if they have confidence on what to change. In my tool kit you will find A co2 Pitt stop spare single (tubular).
Bree Wee (winner IM Canada 2014)
I don’t race with power or HR monitor. I do look at a Garmin for pacing when I run. I use Sew ups (tubular) and 100-110 pressure. Nothing special in my bike tool bag, sorry, I keep it simple (standard tube repair).
Rebecca Hoschke (Winner IM Australia 2013)
I have both power and speed, but rarely look at either. I largely race by feel. I would recommend either:
Continental Tubular Competition Tyres, pressure 120
S-Works Turbo 24 Clincher Tyres, pressure 110
And in the kit I have Spare tube, leavers, CO2 and pump.
Guy Crawford (7th IMNZ)
I have ridden with Power a lot. Recently I haven't been using it but it's something I highly recommend and will go back to it shortly. I run Challenge Tubulars for racing and usually run 120PSI. A Pit Stop is all I carry for punctures!!
Katy Duffield (winner Korea 70.3)
I always have speed, distance, time, and power on display. Clincher tyres - 120psi. In the tool kit is 2 x spare tube, 2 x canister, canister attachment, 1 x pit stop, tyre levers
Michelle Duffield (1st overall Geraldton marathon 2014)
I work with Power - no speed. Clincher tyres, Depending on conditions (road surface and temperature) but about 110psi on the front and 120psi on the rear. The tool kit needs a spare tube and a mini Allen key.
Kate Bevilaqua (3 X IM Champion)
I have both (power and speed) showing on my display but I am definitely more interested in the power numbers and not the speed. I don't aim for a particular speed when I am racing but a power number instead. Speed has too many outside influences such as wind and terrain. But with a power goal I can pace myself accordingly. Tubulars for racing! Tyre pressure for me on race day is between 100 - 110 depending on the road surface. Somewhere like Ironman WA nice fast roads I would race 110, but Ironman New Zealand, bumpy roads I would race 100. Race day my spare and tools are attached at the back behind my seat with electrical tape. Because I use Tubulars I also carry with me a small blade. This way I know I can cut the tyre of quicker than trying to pull it off!
Brad Hosking (WA age group legend)
Both (power and speed showing). The more information and feedback I can get, the better I am able to make my pacing calculations. Clincher to train (120psi) Tubular to race (160-170psi). 3 x CO2 cartridges. 1 x cartridge head. 1 x pitstop canister. 1 x spare tubular and small rag all in the tool kit
I have only power displayed while in an IM event. Speed is irrelevant. I attempt to hold a continual power for the entire ride not overextending myself too early and “burning matches”. My greatest joy in my most recent bike leg was seeing the last 2 8km splits had higher average power than any others before that. I race tubular at 120psi and in my tool kit is 2 X Co2, small Allen keys, tubular replacement and pitstop.